Stats & Info: Mario Chalmers

Why Ray Allen will succeed in Miami

July, 7, 2012
7/07/12
5:26
PM ET
ESPN.com IllustrationRay Allen has agreed to join LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh in Miami.
With Ray Allen agreeing to sign with the Miami Heat, the NBA champions have added one of the greatest shooters in league history.

How will Allen fit in with the Heat?

Using Synergy Sports Technology to analyze Allen’s potential role with the Heat, it seems that he will fit in just fine.

OPEN JUMPERS FOR THE HEAT

The acquisitions of LeBron James and Chris Bosh created more open jumpers for the Heat. The year before the Big Three formed, only 41 percent of the Heat's catch-and-shoot jumpers were unguarded, the fifth lowest percentage in the league. But that percentage has increased over the past two seasons.

During the 2010-11 season, 57 percent of the Heat’s catch-and-shoot jumpers were unguarded, the second highest percentage in the NBA. And last season, 63 percent were unguarded, which ranked third.

Four of the Heat's current players that were in Miami prior to the Big Three era -- Mario Chalmers, Dwyane Wade, James Jones and Udonis Haslem -- have received a significant increase in unguarded catch-and-shoot jumpers over the past two seasons as compared to the season before the Big Three formed.

Only 30 percent of Wade's shots were unguarded in 2009-10, but that percentage doubled to 60 percent last season. Nearly four of every five Chalmers catch-and-shoot jumpers last season were unguarded.

LeBRON & BOSH MAKE TEAMMATES BETTER

Chalmers, Wade, Jones and Haslem saw an immediate improvement on catch-and-shoot jumpers after LeBron and Bosh arrived. The most dramatic improvement was Wade, who went from a 28 percent shooter on catch-and-shoot jumpers in 2009-10 to 37 percent in 2010-11.

RAY ALLEN CATCH-AND-SHOOT JUMPERS

Allen has improved his field goal percentage on catch-and-shoot jumpers over the past two seasons as compared to the previous three seasons. He shot less than 43 percent and ranked outside of the top 50 (among the 200-plus players with at least 100 attempts) in each season from 2007-08 to 2009-10, but he shot 45 percent and ranked in the top 25 in each of the past two seasons.

Allen has also improved his field goal percentage on unguarded catch-and-shoot jumpers in each of the past two seasons. In 2009-10, he shot 42 percent on those shots. That percentage jumped to 51 percent in 2010-11 and 52 percent last season, which ranked sixth of the 68 players with at least 100 attempts.

Over the past few years, Allen has been left open more often on catch-and-shoot jumpers. In 2005-06, only 31 percent of those shots were unguarded. That percentage increased in each of the next three seasons. In 2010-11, he was left open on 49 percent of his catch-and-shoot jumpers, and last season 53 percent of those attempts were unguarded.

CONCLUSION

The Heat have had more open jumpers since LeBron and Bosh came to Miami. And the Heat’s most prominent shooters that were in Miami prior to the Big Three era became better shooters after LeBron and Bosh arrived. Allen was just as good of a shooter (if not better) last season as he was a few years ago. Part of this is because Allen has been left open more over the past two seasons.

If the pattern continues, expect Allen to receive even more open jumpers in Miami.

Game 1 crucial for both Celtics and Heat

May, 28, 2012
5/28/12
3:03
PM ET

Greg M. Cooper/US PresswireLeBron James averages 30.2 points in his postseason career in the Conference Finals.
The Boston Celtics and Miami Heat square off in Game 1 tonight (ESPN, 8:30 ET) in what is the third postseason meeting all-time between these two squads. Boston defeated Miami 4-1 in the 2010 First Round, while the Heat beat the Celtics last season 4-1 in the Conference Semifinals.

Tonight will be crucial, as the winner of Game 1 in the Conference Finals has gone on to win the series 80.0 percent (88-22) of the time in NBA history. The Celtics won the 2011-12 regular season series 3-1, but Mario Chalmers is the only one of the projected Game 1 starters to have started in all four meetings this season.

The Heat have performed well in these situations under coach Erik Spoelstra. According to Elias, Miami is 5-0 in playoff-series opening games at home under Spoelstra, and only four other head coaches in NBA history were 5-0 or better in series-opening home games: Doug Moe (8-0), Mike Dunleavy (6-0), Fred Schaus (5-0) and Bill Russell (5-0).

More good news for Heat fans: LeBron James averages 30.2 points in his postseason career in the Conference Finals, his highest scoring output of any postseason round. James has also averaged 27.1 points per game in 18 career postseason games against the Celtics.

Teammate Dwyane Wade has been even better against Boston, however. In 10 career postseason games, Wade averages 31.7 points against the Celtics, his highest against any team.

One aspect to watch for will be when the duo is in transition. James (72) and Wade (57) are ranked first and second in individual transition points this postseason, and the Heat are 7-0 this postseason when they score at least 14 transition points.

Boston, meanwhile, has had to combat history to even reach this stage in the playoffs. According to Elias, the Celtics are just the fourth team since the ABA-NBA merger in 1976-77 to make the Conference Finals after entering the All-Star break under .500. The last team to accomplish the feat was the Phoenix Suns in 1983-84 (lost to the Los Angeles Lakers 4-2 in the Conference Finals).

Much of the Celtics' postseason success has been thanks to Kevin Garnett, who has increased his offensive production this postseason. He is averaging a double-double, and has already recorded six games this postseason with at least 20 points and 10 rebounds.

Teammate Rajon Rondo has also been key, having recorded at least 11 assists in nine of his 12 games this postseason. Rondo also has nine career postseason triple-doubles, second-most among active players and tied for the fourth-most all-time. Rondo's nine triple-doubles have all come in the last four postseasons, and are more than all other NBA players combined over that span (seven).

SPONSORED HEADLINES